Sterile Processing Technician I (#RH0851)
$19.30-$23.46 Hourly / $3,345.75-$4,066.79 Monthly / $40,149.10-$48,801.49 Yearly


Under supervision, performs routine technical work in the receiving, inventory and stocking of patient care materials and supplies; learns to clean, decontaminate, prepare and sterilize surgical and procedure trays and case carts; and does related or other work as required in accordance with Rule 3, Section 3 of the Civil Service Rules.


This is the entry level class in the Sterile Processing Technician series. Incumbents clean, decontaminate, inspect, pack and sterilize surgical instruments and medical devices. Incumbents learn accounting, control and inventory, and the requisition process of medical supplies and equipment needed for patient care. As experience and training are gained, incumbents gradually work more independently, exercising limited judgment and discretion. This class is distinguished from Sterile Processing Technician II in that incumbents of the latter class are fully trained, operate with greater independence and may work alone or act as a lead worker.


  • Receives and sorts surgical equipment being returned for decontamination and reprocessing; removes gross soil; manually cleans, disinfects, and/or decontaminates items; loads, unloads and monitors the operations of automatic washers and other equipment; tests equipment for proper functioning before releasing it for use. 
  • Inspects and processes trays and other equipment from decontamination area; operates and monitors steam and gas sterilizers; checks daily biological results; assembles and wraps trays and other items for sterilization; monitors expired sterilization dates and rotates stock to minimize resterilization. 
  • Cleanse and disinfects all surgical case carts; cleans and disinfects patient care equipment and orthopedic traction equipment; maintains clean and sanitary work areas. 
  • Prepares and restocks surgical case carts using physicians preference cards; restocks processed storage area; prepares and stages case carts for surgery. 
  • Learns to fill requests for and issue medical supplies and patient care equipment; distributes supplies and equipment to units in a timely manner. 
  • Learns to organize and maintain computerized inventory system, including product research, requisition, storage, quality assurance, billing and inventory control. 
  • Learns to serve as a liaison with other health care providers and support agencies to obtain, borrow or loan out highly specialized equipment; arranging for transportation and/or setup of such equipment; maintaining resource list for special equipment needs. 
  • Participates in educational programs and in-service meetings as required.


Experience: Six months experience performing clerical support or inventory distribution work, preferably in an acute care hospital setting. 

Experience: Six months experience cleaning, decontaminating, packaging or sterilizing surgical trays and supplies in a medical setting. 

Education: Successful completion of a training program as a medical instrument technician, or a sterile processing technician, through a training program approved by San Joaquin General Hospital.


Basic medical terminology; sterilization methods, supply distribution, storage and inventory control; basic filing and recordkeeping systems; sterilization, equipment and parts common to acute care hospitals; basic computer and computer software relevant to department operations; safety rules and regulations in the operation of equipment.


Clean, sterilize, assemble, and store medical supplies and equipment according to established standards and procedures; utilize standard office procedures and equipment; operate computers and related software; read and use manufacturer’s catalogs and parts lists; systematically arrange similar kinds of stock and/or property into groups or categories according to established criteria; maintain accurate inventory records; establish and maintain cooperative working relationships with coworkers, vendors and agencies; communicate effectively with coworkers and public.


Mobility-Operating a data entry device; frequent standing and walking for prolonged periods of time; occasional bending, stooping, and reaching overhead; Lifting-Lifting of 30 pounds or less; push case carts weighing up to 100 pounds; Vision-Constant use of overall visual capabilities; frequent need for color perception, hand/eye coordination, reading and/or close up work; Dexterity-Frequent holding, grasping, repetitive motion and writing; Hearing/Talking-Constant hearing and talking of normal speech in person and on the telephone; Emotional/Psychological-Frequent public contact; occasional exposure to emergency situations, trauma, grief or death; occasional working alone; Special Requirements-May require working weekends/nights/overtime; Environmental Conditions-Frequent exposure to noise; occasional risk of exposure to hazardous materials, dirt dust, smoke, fumes, poor ventilation and indoor cold/heat. San Joaquin County complies with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and, upon request, will consider reasonable accommodations to enable individuals with disabilities to perform essential job functions.

CLASS: RH0851; EST: 9/13/1995; REV: 10/10/2007;